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TMS-9900 CP/M?


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#26 Ksarul OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jan 5, 2016 9:36 PM

The TI RP/M disks were usually in single density format, as the Foundation card used the PEB's disk controller. Kaypro disks could be anything from a SSSD to DSDD format back then, as the Kaypro II supported all of those formats. If you have the disks from a MorningStar CP/M card, those used the Osborne I disk format--but the MorningStar card used its onboard disk controller, not the regular PEB controller (so it had to have dedicated drives in an external case). I believe the Osborne was expecting DD disks.

 

A 1.2 Meg drive won't read these well, if at all--and since the Foundation disks would have been in single density, your current setup won't read them in any event.

 

One sure way to read them no matter what the original formatting would be to get a 360K drive in an external case and connect it to either a Cryoflux board or a SuperCard Pro. The drive connects to the Device and the device connects via the USB port. The controller is on the device, so it doesn't matter if the motherboard has the SD support or not--the device reads them and saves the images to the PC. Both devices have been tested with TI disks. . .



#27 RickyDean OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jan 6, 2016 6:40 AM

The TI RP/M disks were usually in single density format, as the Foundation card used the PEB's disk controller. Kaypro disks could be anything from a SSSD to DSDD format back then, as the Kaypro II supported all of those formats. If you have the disks from a MorningStar CP/M card, those used the Osborne I disk format--but the MorningStar card used its onboard disk controller, not the regular PEB controller (so it had to have dedicated drives in an external case). I believe the Osborne was expecting DD disks.

 

A 1.2 Meg drive won't read these well, if at all--and since the Foundation disks would have been in single density, your current setup won't read them in any event.

 

One sure way to read them no matter what the original formatting would be to get a 360K drive in an external case and connect it to either a Cryoflux board or a SuperCard Pro. The drive connects to the Device and the device connects via the USB port. The controller is on the device, so it doesn't matter if the motherboard has the SD support or not--the device reads them and saves the images to the PC. Both devices have been tested with TI disks. . .

But doesn't the Foundation card have it's own disk controller chip(looks like it) and didn't it just piggy-back to the TI controller to use the existing drives?



#28 Ksarul OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jan 6, 2016 6:58 AM

It doesn't see the TI card at all, IIRC RickyDean. I think it expects its own, dedicated drives on that on-board controller. That was the way mine was set up when I received it in a PEB I bought with it and the Foundation 80-Column cards in it many years ago. The only cable jumping to another card was the RS-232 connection between the 80-Column card and the Z-80 card.



#29 RickyDean OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jan 6, 2016 7:14 AM

Yes and I believe that the TI was used as a terminal with the Foundation CP/M card plugged into the Ti Rs232 card, because I remember playing with it some, when I first got it 20 years ago. I will attempt to plug in a rs232 by this weekend and see if it will function at all and see if there is any communication between them. I am tearing apart a truck, rebuilding a jeep, trying to get my ti stuff operational, and several other things at once, so time is limited.



#30 Bill Loguidice OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jan 6, 2016 9:06 AM

Just cherry-picking while I am at the office: I can see where the 80 column mode would be a problem.  While some CP/M software will run in 40 columns, the majority indeed need 80 columns to run.  If we want CP/M on the TI, we can do 40 columns on the low-end expanded machine, but we could do 80 columns with an F18A-enhanced machine.  My thoughts exclude an 80 column card as I do not have one so I do not think of one.

 

Well, there was a good amount of (converted or otherwise) 40 column CP/M software for the Coleco Adam and C-64, but you're right, generally speaking, CP/M is best on an 80 column display.



#31 Tursi OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jan 7, 2016 3:24 AM

There was an interesting CP/M machine in Ontario called the Nabu that used a 9918A VDP -- although it was 40 column, it had dedicated scroll keys to simulate 80 columns. ;)
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#32 JamesD OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jan 7, 2016 2:48 PM

Worrying about 80 column support is way down the list if you ask me.
Unless you have 8080/Z80 emulation, a Z80 to 9900 translator, or a Z80 coprocessor, you aren't going to run any existing CP/M software anyway.

I think a native 9900 CP/M or similar OS needs to be written first.

You also need expanded RAM to even hold most useful CP/M programs.
 

If you are duplicating CP/M, I think that's around 30+ BDOS calls for CP/M 2.2 compatibility.
That requires hardware I/O including disk I/O, a command processor, several commands, and some level of terminal emulation.

You don't need all the DOS calls or complete terminal emulation before you start working on emulation or applications, but you at least need basic console I/O functions which is something like 12 calls.  Since buffered console input is required, you probably need to perform keyboard I/O in an interrupt handler.  



#33 Vorticon OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jan 7, 2016 8:04 PM

Homebrew CP/M on the TI. A P112 single board CP/M computer with a GIDE IDE interface mounted on perfboard inside the PEB and getting power from the slot. I connected it to Jeff Brown's 80 column terminal emulator via a the RS232 card et voila! A full fledged CP/M system running on the TI :)

 

P112 1
P112 2


#34 JamesD OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Jan 8, 2016 12:12 AM

Homebrew CP/M on the TI. A P112 single board CP/M computer with a GIDE IDE interface mounted on perfboard inside the PEB and getting power from the slot. I connected it to Jeff Brown's 80 column terminal emulator via a the RS232 card et voila! A full fledged CP/M system running on the TI :)

 

So the TI is basically just a terminal emulator for a CP/M system here?
 



#35 Ksarul OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Jan 8, 2016 6:18 AM

Pertty much--and both of the earlier CP/M cards for the TI (Foundation and MorningStar) functioned pretty much the same way.



#36 Vorticon OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Jan 8, 2016 11:48 AM

So the TI is basically just a terminal emulator for a CP/M system here?
 

 

Yup, but the illusion is complete with the CP/M card inside the PEB :) I also can connect an external 3.5" floppy drive whenever I need to transfer data or programs to the CP/M system, which could also reside in the PEB. Frankly, I see little need to use the original TI disk controller anyway here or any other resource on the TI for that matter since CP/M was mostly text based. 

The nice thing about my setup was that I could switch it in and out of the system with the flip of a switch, so I essentially had a dual booting TI system. I even programmed a Pi calculator under MBASIC on it as a demo I gave at one of the Chicago TI faires :)

The only limitation was the baud rate on the TI, as I found that 9600 was the most I could use reliably, which obviously slowed down the system significantly...



#37 JamesD OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Jan 9, 2016 1:14 AM

Pertty much--and both of the earlier CP/M cards for the TI (Foundation and MorningStar) functioned pretty much the same way.

There's nothing wrong with that.  It's faster than emulation and requires a lot less custom code on the TI.
I would like to see a native CP/M 9900 though.  
The one thing the TI has always lacked is a decent command based OS, though it's understandable given the closed design.



#38 Tursi OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Jan 9, 2016 1:42 AM

I did the same with the Linux cartridge I presented in Chicago years ago. ;) I still mean to revisit that and do it again (and it'll be a lot cheaper now) with the USB ports presented so it's actually USEFUL. In that case I used an early version of the AVR GROM as a serial port, so I was able to connect at a much higher serial bitrate. That's the main reason the final UberGROM still has a UART peripheral enabled.

#39 RickyDean OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 10, 2017 5:51 AM

This is for you Ksarul, but also for anyone else who might have one of these cards. I am currently in the process of searching through disks, trying to locate the OS, but until it surfaces, these at least should give you some information to digest. Can someone with access to Whtech, please upload this to the appropriate section after making sure it unzips and is readable. Thanks all. :)  

Attached Files



#40 Ksarul OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 10, 2017 8:44 PM

Many thanks! I really needed this one to go with my card. . .it explains much that I didn't know about it yet.



#41 RickyDean OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 11, 2017 5:48 AM

Many thanks! I really needed this one to go with my card. . .it explains much that I didn't know about it yet.

The first printed page is an addendum that i placed into the flow of the scan, The last hand written page in the manual is from the original owner of the card I believe. So are the notes in the text.


Edited by RickyDean, Fri Aug 11, 2017 5:49 AM.


#42 ti99iuc OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 11, 2017 6:05 AM

Very good Ricky! thanks for sharing !

 

i could have the floppy but they have to be dumped and i do not know how to do.
i have an error using them with TI controller of course.



#43 --- Ω --- OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 11, 2017 6:31 AM

A YouTube video showing off TMS 9900 CP/M would be nice..... someday?

These cards interest me.



#44 --- Ω --- OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 11, 2017 6:34 AM

 

... generally speaking, CP/M is best on an 80 column display.

 

Looks like a nice application for the F18A.



#45 danwinslow OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 11, 2017 9:23 AM

Worrying about 80 column support is way down the list if you ask me.

 

Just as an aside, the original reason for 80 columns as opposed to other amounts was that the traditional IBM format punched card had 80 columns. Character TTYs and early monitors were basically still card punch machines at first, just with electronic data instead of actual punched cards, and so the 80 column display was an important feature.



#46 RickyDean OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 11, 2017 9:48 AM

Very good Ricky! thanks for sharing !

 

i could have the floppy but they have to be dumped and i do not know how to do.
i have an error using them with TI controller of course.

You can use Anadisk or Teledisk to dump the disk on a PC. There are probably other ways also. I use to have the disk and probably still do, just have to really hunt for them, and time is not on my side. But I am trying to locate them. As a side note I do believe they were in fat 12 format, but could be mistaken.



#47 Ksarul OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 11, 2017 10:16 AM

The format was the same one used for Kaypro CP/M disks. . .



#48 RickyDean OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 11, 2017 10:27 AM

The format was the same one used for Kaypro CP/M disks. . .

Yep had me thinking too... ;)

Oh you were talking about something else.

BTW: Here's one link that will help someone get started dumping:  http://www.z80.eu/transfercpm.html

 

http://www.gaby.de/ecconver.htm


Edited by RickyDean, Fri Aug 11, 2017 10:39 AM.


#49 RickyDean OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 11, 2017 2:31 PM

Some more good stuff, http://www.retroarch...n/disks/kaypro/






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